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Vegan Challah Bread

Prep Time4 hrs 30 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time4 hrs 50 mins
Course: Side Dish
Keyword: bread, challah, plant-based, vegan
Servings: 1 large, 1.25 pound loaf

Equipment

  • Two aluminum baking pans
  • Silicone baking mat or parchment paper
  • Stand Mixer (with dough hook and whisk attachments)
  • Pastry Cutter or large knife
  • Plastic wrap

Ingredients

For the challah dough:

  • 6 tablespoons aquafaba whisked until frothy
  • ½ cup tap water (118 grams)
  • ½ cup canola oil (110 grams)
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour (450 grams)
  • teaspoons kosher salt (8 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast (9.5 grams)

For the egg wash:

  • 2 tablespoons nondairy milk unsweetened
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Instructions

  • Pour aquafaba into the bowl of a stand mixer and whip on medium speed until lightly frothy using the whisk attachment.
  • Once frothy, add remaining ingredients to the mixing bowl* and mix with the dough hook attachment until dough comes together and forms a smooth ball. This should take approximately 8-10 minutes on medium speed.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave in a warm area of your kitchen to rise for two hours. The dough will not double in size, and this is okay!
  • After two hours, once the dough has puffed up a little, transfer it to a cutting board and separate into four equal pieces. Roll each piece into a long, 18-20 inch long rope.
  • Pinch the four strands together at the top and begin to braid:
    Working from right to left, take the rightmost strand and weave it over, under, and over each of the three subsequent strands. This is the method that we will use for every braid. The rightmost strand goes over the next strand over to the left, under the next, and over the next.
  • If you desire, tuck the top and bottom ends of each braid under the loaf.
  • Cover the loaf gently with lightly oiled platic wrap and leave in a warm place to rise for another two hours. The braided dough should expand significantly.
  • During the last twenty minutes or rising, preheat your oven to 375° and whisk the 'egg wash' ingredients together in a shall bowl.
  • When the oven has preheated, stack the baking sheet with the bread on top of another baking sheet of the same size. This double layering will prevent the bottom of the bread from burning while allowing the interior to cook through.
  • Remove the plastic wrap from the bread and generously brush the loaf with the egg wash mixture. Be sure to get the egg wash into every crevice of the loaf, as this will help ensure even browning.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the loaf is golden brown.
  • Let the bread cool for ten minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack. Allow to cool for at least 30 minute before slicing.

Notes

*I highly recommend, when adding ingredients to the stand mixer, weighing your dry ingredients instead of measuring by volume, particularly the flour! It helps to ensure consistency results with something as finicky as bread. I have included the ideal weight of each ingredient in grams to help make this process easier.